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First time out with the D80

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  • #1532
    SilverStag
    Participant

    I finally got the chance to spend an evening shooting with my new (to me) D80:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/pjern/sets/72157612960458802/

    A not at all unpleasant way to spend a chilly evening.

    Things I learned:

    1. Even if it looks and handles like your old camera- it’s not!

    2. Some functions *do not work the same way* from camera model to camera model- Auto ISO in particular, in my case. I didn’t know it would continue to jump the ISO even when using external flash. I ended up with more noise than I expected because of that.

    3. Don’t get so involved with the new camera that you forget the other stuff- I lost a lot of shots at the beginning of the evening because I didn’t notice the SB-600 was set to TTL-BL instead of just TTL.

    So, I was a little overconfident, and paid a price in quality. I can live with that lesson. I still had fun, and that’s the name of the game for me.

    #20942
    soosh
    Participant

    looks positively grueling.

    #20943
    SilverStag
    Participant

    looks positively grueling.

    Yeah, I know, but somebody has to take pictures of scantily-clad women. It’s a sacrifice I make freely.

    #20944
    3Horn
    Participant

    Yeah, I know, but somebody has to take pictures of scantily-clad women. It’s a sacrifice I make freely.

    I feel your pain…

    My burlesque show galleries:

    http://nakedlens.org/gallery2/v/burlesque/

    #20945
    caradoc
    Participant

    Learn to use the SB-600 off-camera.

    If you go to Custom Menu Setting #22 on the D80, you can change the behavior of the pop-up flash to make it remotely control other Nikon flashes.

    One SB-800 to camera right in a bounce umbrella outdoors:

    Two SB-800s left and right in shoot-through umbrellas:

    Both images were taken using a D80 with the pop-up flash as my Commander for the remote flashes.

    (I’m in the middle of a project to make an instructional DVD for exactly that…)

    #20946
    3Horn
    Participant

    Learn to use the SB-600 off-camera.

    I picked up a 900 to replace my 600 when the bulb blew on me back in December, it is made of awesome. Right now I’m trying to decide whether to invest in some Alien Bees or another 900 to use for a paying gig I have in August.

    It’s straight portrait work, so the 900s would probably be fine, and I’m more likely to use CLS in various environments than I am to cart around studio strobes.

    Of course strobes have the benefit of providing far more light than I’ll ever need.

    #20947
    SilverStag
    Participant

    Learn to use the SB-600 off-camera.

    For off-camera work I use studio strobes.

    #20948
    caradoc
    Participant

    For off-camera work I use studio strobes.

    I use studio strobes in the studio, or in locations where I’m not having to carry gear a few miles to get to the location.

    In remote locations, any hot-shoe flash can be better than no additional light at all. Heck, even one reflector can make a huge difference.

    The cool part about the D80 (and the D90, D200, D300, or D700) is that if you’ve got one, and any of the currently-sold Nikon flashes like the SB-600, the recently-discontinued SB-800, or the “made of awesome” SB-900 (just don’t depend on it in fast-moving situations because it’s got a reputation for overheating and shutting down at the worst possible moment), you’ve got on-location off-camera strobes, remotely controllable from the camera’s pop-up flash in manual mode or TTL.

    They just *work*.

    #20949
    3Horn
    Participant

    the “made of awesome” SB-900 (just don’t depend on it in fast-moving situations because it’s got a reputation for overheating and shutting down at the worst possible moment),

    Ya’ know, in almost six months, I’ve had it overheat maybe five times, and that was always in cases where it was dialed up to full power. For most of my stuff it doesn’t make it above the second notch on the thermometer. I use Duracell rechargeables or Eneloops, and when it has overheated, swapping the batteries for cool fresh ones usually clears up the switch in a matter of a couple of minutes.

    Now I realize that two or three minutes can be catastrophic for some people, such as wedding photographers, but shouldn’t they have an extra body and flash anyway?

    #20950
    caradoc
    Participant

    Now I realize that two or three minutes can be catastrophic for some people, such as wedding photographers, but shouldn’t they have an extra body and flash anyway?

    Yep. The two guys I’ve heard the most complaints from about the SB-900 are wedding photographers in Arizona.

    Not exactly temperature-friendly for the flash.

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